Well, at least now you know what the box of the game you're going to be addicted to later this year will look like. On Tuesday, Valve Software released the official box art for its long-anticipated Portal 2 title.
No matter whether you’re rocking a professional-grade DSLR or you shoot your snaps with an iPhone, having a capable method of organizing your collection and editing your photos is essential. iPhoto comes with every new Mac and it does a lot, but it isn’t the be-all-end-all for every user. So we looked at five other applications that can help you corral and edit your photos; then we collected 10 solid tips for making those photos look their best, no matter which app you’re using. You’ll never regret filling up a memory card again.
The Mac’s window-based user interface was cutting edge in 1984. And while OS X has features that the first Mac users couldn’t have dreamed about, the basic metaphor for interacting with our machines hasn’t changed all that much in the last few decades.
Tinderbox is billed as a “personal content assistant,” which gave us happy visions of a devoted digital concierge at our beck and call. It’s a tool for recording, organizing, and connecting bits of information called notes--snippets of text about which you can record copious amounts of metadata. Options are vast, but Tinderbox can feel more like a chore than an assistant.
With the bevy of software available for the Mac, it can sometimes be difficult to remember to update all of the applications you may have installed. After all, that software is meant to be used, not just updated constantly. But in reality, many Mac apps require care and feeding, so we’ll show you the best, most efficient path to getting that chore done without squandering any of your precious free time.
If you’re a guitarist, Capo is the bionic upgrade you wish you could give your ears. Drag any track from your iTunes library into Capo, and it quickly displays the music as visual data--a spectrogram full of blue smears. Those smears represent notes in the recording; the smears near the top are the higher-pitched notes and the ones below are the lower pitches. Click the cursor on a spectro-smear to hear its corresponding MIDI note. If that note is part of the solo or chord you are trying to figure out, drag the cursor on it a bit and, like magic, a tablature number appears below, showing you exactly where to place your fingers on your guitar.
Unison would be perfect if we found ourselves time traveling to the ’80s and needing to look up job listings, download software, or pose questions to an online community. That’s because Unison browses Usenet, the text-based precursor to the modern internet. Once the cutting edge of online interactivity, Usenet is now the domain of niche topics and downloads of varying degrees of legality. Unison makes it easy to grab video files, music, and other media, and its interface lets you smoothly navigate Usenet’s bulletin-board depths. Unfortunately, the web, the iTunes Store, streaming Netflix, email groups, and other, better services now limit Usenet’s appeal. Time travel remains elusive, so there’s little reason for others to get started on Usenet now, but Unison makes a great browser for Usenet regulars.
With the release of iLife '11 comes a freshly polished version of iPhoto, the digital photo manager that's been helping us keep our photos in tip-top shape since 2001. The updated software introduces a handful of new and improved features that will surely make it easier for you to organize, edit, and share those precious digital memories. We put some tips together to get you started with the new release, or to give those of you who still haven't upgraded a sneak peak at the new update.
Maybe it's the unintentional assonance. Or the curious definition of "Back to the Mac" that Steve casually slid into last week's keynote. Or maybe it's because at the first Mac-centric event of the year, no one could stop talking about iOS. Whatever the reason, there’s something about hearing “"Mac App Store" that conjures equal feelings of glee and dread around here.
It's not that we don't welcome a healthy serving of innovation in Apple's ever-shrinking computer segment, but we're always a little skeptical when someone--even Steve--tries to fix something that isn’t broken. Of course, the dedicated App Store might very well be the greatest thing to happen to the Mac since the two-button mouse, and we can certainly see how that could be. But if it’s not, don’t say we didn't warn you.